views updated May 18 2018

con·cep·tion / kənˈsepshən/ • n. 1. the action of conceiving a child or of a child being conceived: an unfertilized egg before conception. ∎  the forming or devising of a plan or idea: the time between a product's conception and its launch.2. the way in which something is perceived or regarded: our conception of how language relates to reality. ∎  a general notion; an abstract idea: the conception of a balance of power. ∎  a plan or intention: reconstructing Bach's original conceptions. ∎  understanding; ability to imagine: he had no conception of politics.DERIVATIVES: con·cep·tion·al / -shənl/ adj.


views updated May 21 2018

conception To conceive usually implies the establishment of a pregnancy — receiving an embryo into the womb for further development, comparable to conceiving an idea in the mind. But conception is essentially defined as the successful entry of sperm into ovum — synonymous with fertilization — even though the fertilized embryo may never attain the privilege of implantation in the uterus and the future which that promises. The point is academic, because the loss of a microscopic fertilized embryo goes unrecognized. When pregnancy is in fact established, conception in the sense of fertilization can be roughly dated, knowing the occasions of coitus, and that the two gametes usually meet as the ovum traverses the Fallopian tube, 7 to 14 days before the next expected period in a 28-day menstrual cycle.

Stuart Judge

See pregnancy.


views updated May 29 2018

conception action of conceiving in the womb XIII; apprehension, imagination XIV; notion XVII. — (O)F. — L. conceptiō, -ōn-, f. concipere, concept- CONCEIVE.
So concept †thought, opinion, etc. XVI; (philos.) XVII. — late L. conceptus, f. pp. stem of concipere. conceptual XVII. — medL. conceptuālis, f. conceptus; hence conceptualist (scholastic philos.) XVIII, -ism XIX.


views updated May 23 2018

conception The fertilization of a mammalian egg cell by a sperm cell, which occurs in the fallopian tube. Conception is followed by implantation.


views updated Jun 11 2018

conception (kŏn-sep-shŏn) n.
1. (in gynaecology) the start of pregnancy, when a male germ cell (sperm) fertilizes a female germ cell (ovum) in the Fallopian tube.

2. (in psychology) an idea or mental impression.